• Benefits of a Home Warranty Radio Show with Brian Mudd

Benefits of a Home Warranty

This is the Treu Real Estate 911 podcast with Lisa Treu. Lisa will share up to date real estate information with you that you need to know. 

Brian Mudd:

This is the Treu Real Estate 911 podcast with Lisa Treu. Lisa will share up to date real estate information with you that you need to know. 

Welcome to Treu Real Estate 911, it is Brian Mudd along with your local real estate pro, Lisa Treu, and not only do you get the best local real estate information right here, you get other helpful information that has to do with the real estate process. I'll never forget working with the TreuGroup when we purchased our home, and some of the great advice, including something that I wouldn't have considered without them, which was a home warranty, and that's one of the things we're going to be talking about on today's show, and where it can really make a lot of sense, and help you save potentially a lot of money. It's not just about insurance, it's about a strategy going into purchasing a home as well, and the Treu's are there to help you every step of the way.

As we get going, if you're not already there go to treurealestate911.com, and when you get to treurealestate911.com, well, you will find a resource that is just comprehensive as can be, from the ability to search the MLS like a real estate pro, the videos that the Treu's put out there with all the latest information, some of the tips and tricks with local real estate, and of course, all the contact information for the Treu's as well, which are ready to help you seven days a week, buying, selling, if you just have questions 561-972- 8326, that's 561-972-8326. 

Lisa, so as we are taking a look at moving straight into summer, and it's crazy that we're in June, but as we head towards summer officially, we've seen some indications that the local real estate market is cool. What are you seeing in the field?

Lisa Treu:

Well, I think that I hear that, and yet we're super busy. Now, I do feel a little bit of a difference between last summer selling season, and this summer selling season, which remember here in South Florida starts in March or April. We are seeing it be a little bit slower than last year, and yet our team is super busy, so when you price your property right, when you do all the right things, you still are able to get the success even in what would be considered a cooler market.

Brian Mudd:

Well, and that's just it. Even in a market that has changed, that might be a little bit cooler, it doesn't mean that homes aren't selling, just the ones that aren't positioned right and Treu's definitely can can help you with that. Now, as we are talking about home warranties, I mentioned my anecdote, working with you, and Steve, and going through, and getting the recommendation, and go with the home warranty, and really, it's just by trusting you that made me go along with it. My instinct was the other way, and it turned out to save us thousands of dollars it was the right call. Tell us about that end of the advisement process that you provide for folks you work with.

Lisa Treu:

A home warranty for me really brings me back to when I bought my first home. We did not have a great experience. I mean, those of you who know my story of why I got into real estate, it was part of this issue, is that getting the wrong advice, and so, in the first year that we owned our first home as a first time home buyer that honestly didn't have a lot of extra money, everything needed to be replaced within our home, from our AC, to our appliances, and everything worked on day of closing, but over time it just didn't, and so, I have always been a fan of having a home warranty at least the first year as you get to know your home, and it's one of those things that's very inexpensive insurance.

However, one thing that people don't realize is that a seller can provide a home warranty as a marketing incentive, and we've had great success with setting our properties maybe apart from everything else, when they have that peace of mind, that buyer who's looking at the home it becomes the tipping point often between two properties.

Brian Mudd:

When you're thinking about considerations like that most of us when we're a buying home, we're not thinking at that level. We're going, "Oh, we can see this for ourselves, and our family, or this." That's where you strategically can really help us with some of those contextual things that I think otherwise would be missed.

Lisa Treu:

Yes, it's really understanding the person's situation, and the home as well. I would recommend a home warranty for everybody, like I said, the first year, that way you kind of know what you're getting into, but if you have a home that is older, and you're on a tight budget, it's a really good investment, and often, we can even get sellers to pay for that upfront costs, so you have additional peace of mind that if something breaks you're not going to wonder, "How am I going to afford to replace this, you know, big stainless steel refrigerator." 

Brian Mudd:

Okay, and so, on today's show, we're going to be speaking with your partner for home warranties. Kim Hibbs from HWA Warranty. Tell us about Kim, and why you recommend working with her?

Lisa Treu:

Well, we love the partnership that we have. We have a great partnership where if we have a question, or a concern we can pick up the phone, we're not just calling an 800 number, and I love that. I love that I can get a real answer from somebody who knows me, and cares about my clients at a different level, and so, that's why we trust them, and we look forward to recommending them to our client's.

Brian Mudd:

We are joined now by Kim. Kim, welcome to the show. Thank you for taking the time with us today, and tell us a little bit about the experience working with Lisa, working with the TreuGroup, and her clients on home warranties.

Kim Hibbs:

Well, thank you so much for having me today. It's a great pleasure to be able to work with Lisa, and her team. We always are looking to build those partnerships and relationships with our realtors, and build those lifetime relationships with each other, and offering assistance on the home warranty side wherever possible.

Brian Mudd:

You know, Kim, Lisa mentioned some of the circumstances where they really can make a lot of sense, especially older homes, and the like. From your vantage point, what are some of the misconceptions, or just unknowns people often will have when it comes to home warranty?

Kim Hibbs:

Basically, they a lot of times walking into a property, they may have some things that are working on the inspection report at that time, and then, several months down the road they will have a failure with either an air conditioning unit, or an appliance, and that's where the home warranty will kick in, and cover those items, and help limit those outof-pocket expenses on the unexpected break down to the homeowners.

Brian Mudd:

Lisa, when you're working through these details, one of the advantages working with the TreuGroup, how you have specialists in every aspect of the real estate process, Steve, for example, his background in building and construction, he understands so many of these different details that an average real estate agent wouldn't have that kind of perspective, how does that factor into some of these thoughts, and considerations?

Lisa Treu:

When we look at the inspection report, of course, and look at the age of the appliances, I mean, if everything is brand new, and the misconception, I think with a warranty is people think it's just your appliances, and that is not true. It covers so many other components of your property, and so, we look at the age of that home, and how it's been cared for, and even though everything may be working today, maybe a tenant was in there, and it, over time things just aren't going to last as long. We're going to look, and really just as we do everything, it's very customized to what we can expect from that home, and none of us have a crystal ball.

However, for five or $600, if you could just say, "Look, if one thing dies in the year, you are ahead of the game." And, statistically, things do break when you own a home. It's also wonderful if you have an investment property, because you have, again, peace of mind that if something breaks, that you've got a great service that you can call if you're maybe not local, or out of state, because they have vetted the companies that they're using, so you don't have to wonder, "Well, what plumber am I going to call?" Or, "What electrician am I going to call?" You have one person to call, one number to call, and they'll take care of that coordination.

Brian Mudd:

Kim, let's talk about that. There's some people that are concerned that the warranty will actually pay off, and it will follow through. Lisa's talking about having the companies that are already there that are dependable to work with, speak to the credibility of your product.

Kim Hibbs:

All of our vendors are licensed, and bonded, and professionals, that we contract with, with our company. There is no hesitation as far as we're just going to send out someone that doesn't know their trade very well, so that is all taken care of on our end by our contracts relations team. We also will always use new parts on anything that has to be repaired or replaced, so as far as that, and we also look to always build that relationship even with the contract side, and get the best possible that we can to work with our company to ensure that the customers are being serviced in a timely fashion as well.

Brian Mudd:

Lisa, in terms of the experience, I know that if you recommend something, and it doesn't go well, you'll hear about it. I know that's certainly the case.

Lisa Treu:

Sure. 

Brian Mudd:

It's one of the exciting things having worked with you over the years. I still to this day not had one person come back, and say that it was not a good recommendation, over 10 years later, and so, in your case, you putting your credibility on the line speaking about this. I mean, that speaks volumes.

Lisa Treu:

Yeah, you know, one of the things that, there's a lot of warranty options out there, there's a lot of companies that do it even locally, that will warranty something, and yet, Kim mentioned something that I think a lot of people don't realize, and she said, “Repair or replace.” That is a big key when you're looking for a warranty company is, what is their policy on will they just fix it till at forever? Or, at some point we know that there's something called end of life. An appliance, or an electrical issue, or maybe something actually needs to be replaced like the air conditioning unit. There comes a point where they just can't fix it anymore, and so, understanding the home warranty's policy on replacement is key, and it's one of the reasons why I endorse them, is because they do have a solid replacement policy. 

Now, that does not mean that, “Okay, I don't like my refrigerator, I want a brand new one, I'm going to call them up, they're going to bring a different type of refrigerator.” But, it also, is confidence that if they will replace it with a like product, which is awesome. We also look at the other extras, and which one makes sense, because I'm not just about spending people's money, but there are some things that maybe you need, like add-ons to your warranty to make sure you have the proper coverage for you. We go through that prior to closing. It's really important if you're buying to go ahead, and get that policy taken care of ahead of time, put it on the closing statement, so you have coverage right away.

And, what most people don't understand is that there's seller coverage. Now, there's some limitations to it, but there's seller coverage as well is if a seller wants to provide it to the buyer, and then, the buyer coverage does not start to closing, so there's 13 months of coverage for that buyer, which again, is a huge, huge selling point.

Brian Mudd:

Kim, in terms of the turnaround, if we buy a home warranty, how long does it take before it goes into effect?

Kim Hibbs:

Your home warranty will go into effect the date of closing, so from that point on the coverage is 13 months, and the homeowner does have the option to renew that, and the company will begin contacting them about 60 days prior to that warranty expiring to see if they're interested in renewing.

Brian Mudd:

Kim, I know when we purchased our policy, we were pleasantly surprised by the affordability of it, and I know everything is specific to the individual home that's been purchased, and what's being covered by the warranty, but generally speaking, what is it that people can can look for? Do you find that people are pleasantly surprised by the cost?

Kim Hibbs:

They are, and one of the great things about Home Warranty of America is if for any reason the home warranty does not get included in the transaction at closing, and worked into a settlement statement, we do offer a 13 month payment plan for homeowners where they can still go through their real estate agent even after the fact, after closing if they were kind of indecisive whether they thought they wanted the home warranty or not. We still can at any time place that order for them.

Brian Mudd:

That's great information. Lisa, any other thoughts you have for people that might be wondering about home warranties?

Lisa Treu:

If you are one of those sellers that feel like you're in a soft market, this might be an extra way to increase your chances of getting your home sold, or selected when a buyer's out there looking at multiple options.

Brian Mudd:

It's a good point.

Lisa Treu:

Yeah. It's a very affordable way, and the other thing we've been using it lately for is when we're having inspection concerns, and it's not that this is broken, because that's not what the warranty is for, but like, “Hey, oh I didn't realize that the AC unit is X amount years old, and yet it's completely functioning, and it's working, and it's in great condition.” It resolves those issues, those kind of the, “Oh, I didn't know that in three years I might have to financially, you know, replace something.” It gives once again peace of mind. A lot of our sellers are offering it when there are inspection issues, and it's a lot less expensive to offer a home warranty than it is to go ahead, and start replacing AC units for example.

Kim Hibbs:

Statistically, homes that are on the market do sell 10% faster than their counterparts when you have a home warranty on them, and they do receive more clicks online, and they are selling for $2300 more than other homes that are on the market. If you are in the process of selling your home contact Lisa about putting listing coverage on, and getting your home sold quicker.

Brian Mudd:

Thinking about all of this in context, listening to the Treu's can be some of the best advice I could ever provide to you, because look, we're all experts in certain areas, for most of us real estate isn't going to be one of them, and even if we're knowledgeable about real estate, what about the entire process end to end? And, that's where the Treu's really can help you in ways that you might not have even realized like with a home warranty, and even some of the strategies that Lisa was just talking about in the seller's market, which is a little bit softer in general right now throughout the palm beaches, throughout South Florida generally.

Reach out to them seven days a week, and they're ready to help you. Call 561-972-8326 561-972-8326. Again, you can always go to treurealestate911.com. I'm Brian Mudd with Lisa Treu, and our guest this week Kim Hibbs from HWA Home Warranty. We'll see you next time.